Music Reviews



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Artist: NO NECK BLUES BAND AND EMBRYO (@)
Title: EmbryoNNCK
Format: CD
Label: Staubgold (@)
Distributor: Wide
Rated: *****

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New York's reclusive No Neck Blues Band joins Munich's veterans Embryo for their first recorded collaboration, with their free-flowing improvisational blend of world music, jazz, krautrock and other indefinable genres. The result is Embryonnck seven tracks and 44 minutes of concentrated musical collaboration, in which both groups diligently shun categorization, drawing upon whatever stray traces of free jazz, psychedelia, ethnic folk, or blues that happen to capture their fancy, while maintaining a decidedly liberal attitude towards possible instrumentation.The opener, "Wieder das erste Mal," sets a tone for the rest of the album and it sounds like all participants are thoroughly locked-in and enjoying themselves. This song is also perhaps the best demonstration of EmbryoNNCK's casual symmetry and its repetitive rhythm is critical. In "Die Farbe aus dem All" the bass and drums looks like a propelling vertigo, while songs like "Five Grams of the Widow", more traditionally rooted in jazz with its bursts of sax rhythms and vibraphone shimmer, and "Zweiter Sommer" provide a valued contrast to some of the heavier tracks. The disc ends with "Das Erste Mal", a song that takes up nearly a third of the album’s total duration. It starts with struck, metallic percussion and cymbals, with a hazy, generative propulsion reminiscent of recent Gang Gang Dance. This piece gains density as it moves along and the collaboration makes it a sort of muscular avant-rock. The cd cover lists 13 musicians and it’s easy to imagine every one of them at work in this last song, even if with so many individual players involved it becomes difficult to pinpoint who exactly is doing what. The album never feels as if the group is over-reaching, but rather they do a good job of maximizing each other's strengths. This, combined with their sense of dynamics, makes for a powerful debut that will hopefully entice them into future collaborations.
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Artist: SEDIA (@)
Title: The even times
Format: CDS (CD Single)
Label: Wallace (@)
Rated: *****
Sedia are back with their second cd and right next to Mattia Coletti’s (their guitarist) solo debut. For those who've never heard the of em, this easily could be filed under Skin Graft music... if it helps. But having been Skin Graft such crazy and varied label let's start by saying this "power trio" (meant in the most traditional sense of the term: guitar-drums-bass) plays some freaky-weird (but still rock) music. If you're looking for conventional rock probably you could be disappointed by what you're gonna listen, but if you miss bands such as Dazzling Killman, Colossamite, US Maple and if you think math rock had a lot say, you’d better put an hand on you wallet. Though not dogmatically following the math rock trum-trum this instrumental combo has a visceral passion for dissonance (post June of 44-Shellac meant) and a good musician skill that helps them to get the result they were looking for. I can't say if it has to do with the fact the production (excellent) has been given to Fabio Magistrali or for the common love for the 60.70ies but I think there are also shades of the mighty A Short Apnea. "C'era una volta il rizoma" and "Canissius" are two of the most intense tracks of this strong but autistic release. For avant/math-rockers orphans it may represent a chance to think of the good ol' days, for who’s bored by soft music a opportunity to listen to something energetic.
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Artist: FLYNT GLASS (@)
Title: Nyarlathotep
Format: CD
Label: Brume (@)
Rated: *****
This a glacial cd right from the first sight, an frost-blue colour that domains everything with ice pics both in and out of the digipack. Weird or not Brume is putting out some industrial oriented electronic musicians, it means they’ve a clear perception of where to go and who’s better for their release schedule. Flint Glass has a good amount of echoes and drones ordered on a rhythmical skeleton, but good taste blessed this release and while being obscure it really sounds "melodical". Can you remember Afx's darkest episodes featured on the second double cd of "Selected ambient works"? Well add some straight tempos (really well programmed) and a load of drones counterbalancing some acute sounds and here is your cocktail. But a good cocktail should be accompanied by some sneaks and let's say the salsa is a nordic one: a bit of Biosphere and a grain of Pan Sonic so that you can even feel the taste in your mouth. "Nyarlathotep" is a record perfectly focussed, a bit too long maybe, but I think that's the problem of many electronic releases. While the lay out may lead to think this cd is meant for "industrial listeners", the music can be appealing for a wide spectrum of electronics fanatics, it accomplish the good result of mixing a night feel with an all electronic ambiental mood. Good and definitely well produced.
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Artist: TRAXX PRESENTS THE DIRTY CRIMINALS
Title: Collision Between Us And The Damned
Format: CD
Label: International Gigolo Records (@)
Distributor: Audioglobe
Rated: *****

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Two years from their previous "Organized Confuzion" Dj Traxx and Deecoy come back to the criminal scene bringing with them ten new tracks of their project The Dirty Criminals. The project doesn’t involve only Traxx and Deecoy because the different tracks have different guests: Tadd Mullinix, Liasons Dangereuses, Matt Nee, Mount Sims and Danny Wolfers (best known as Legowelt). The aim of the duo is to revive the Detroit / Chicago house techno style using real synth and drums (they have a preference on Roland stuff for sure as they use an amazing set of different drum machines such as the 626, 707, 808, 909 along with the 303 bass synth and the Juno 106 keyboard). The tracks sound like wild evolving loops with sounds and rhythms that are like hits of a whip. "Dias cortas" with Liasons Dangereuses on production recall me somewhat the early DafDos tracks (maybe also because for the Spanish lyrics and the shouts). The whole effect created by the album sometimes is of an overwhelming lost of senses. The acid vibes surround the listener and make this album difficult to enjoy if not already used to the genre but it is also true that also the occasional listener could dig since the first try, vocal tracks like "Hurt yourself" (the track that features Mount Sims) or "Pulsecode modulation".
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Artist: DIOXYDE (@)
Title: Social Phobia
Format: CD
Label: Dependent / NTP (@)
Distributor: Alive!
Rated: *****
The Spanish project DIOXYDE returns after 4 years in hiatus and a long time of health recovery after a bad accident with a motor bike. Being started as a duo, DIOXYDE did release back in 2002 their highly praised debut CD "Torschlusspanik" on the long-time defunct Dying Culture label. This debut got released earlier than things started to go mad with the new "fun" genre terms like "Hellektro" and related, and it can be surely called a classic of hard and dark Electro/EBM. Now working alone, finally Marco Calvo is able again after the mentioned accident to concentrate on his music an he has created here 10 tracks and he could add 3 remix works. The music is one of the finest kinds of hard ripping EBM/Dark Electro music, following strong the ideas and sounds of the big players like SUICIDE COMMANDO and AGONOIZE. It reminds me from it’s kind more on the older phases of SUICIDE COMMANDO, Marco mostly spins his tracks in mid-tempo, which gives enough free space for some rhythmical Powernoise influences. Therefor the favs can be found in "Cae La Pression" or the great played instrumental "Aftermath". There are of course some pure and massive floor fillers like "Words Of Judas" or the HOCICO-sounding "Vida Rota", which received an excellent remix by FEINDFLUG. Next to FEINDFLUG we have in AGONOIZE ("Invasive Therapy") and TACTICAL SEKT (Cae La Pression") known and notorious acts offering their remix abilities. Marco proves with this whole album that he is able to play as a solo artist, also the given mix between classical Dark Electro and stompy EBM assaults works well here. No real secret is also the long-time friendship from Marco to his alter ego Johan Van Roy aka SUICIDE COMMANDO, so this might to explain the contract between DIOXYDE and the new NTP label. So you get here one of the hardest, but also most worked out EBM/Dark Electro albums around, nearly in the quality and style, which "Torschlusspanik" has entered before. The names and references speak for itself - what are you waiting for...?
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